Canterbury are confident Blake Green will return successfully next season after the club signed him to a one-year contract before he suffered a torn ACL on Sunday.
The Bulldogs announced on Wednesday that the contract was signed "weeks prior to the injury" and they believe Green has shown the durability throughout his career that will mean he is fit for the 2021 campaign.
The 33-year-old five-eighth, who had a previous stint with the Bulldogs in 2010 where he played in 18 matches, has played in 175 NRL matches for six other clubs.
He suffered the knee injury in just his third game for the Knights following a mid-season switch from the Warriors.
"Having agreed to terms three weeks ago with Blake, we believe that we have secured an excellent player and someone who has performed well wherever he has played," Bulldogs CEO Andrew Hill said.
"We are confident that Blake will be able to bring a great deal of experience and leadership to our young group as an excellent game-manager.
"We feel that Blake will have a great impact on our squad next season, after undergoing a period of recovery around his current injury."
Earlier on Wednesday, Bulldogs halfback Lachlan Lewis said he struggled after being dropped previously this year, but his latest brief demotion was made easier because it allowed Jack Cogger to audition for another contract.
Cogger, who is unsigned for 2021, may find it harder to get a new deal at his current club with Green headed to Belmore.
Lewis is back in the No.7 jersey for Sunday's clash with Canberra after two games out; the first through suspension and the second because his Cogger was preferred as Kieran Foran's halves partner.
Lewis and Cogger have often sparred for a regular place in Canterbury's side over the past two seasons but are close friends.
"At the start it did [take a toll competing with Cogger]. Being young, you try and learn this industry and it's funny that you're so close with 30 guys but there's 17 jobs each week," Lewis said.
"I think this year and a bit towards the end of the last year, you're kind of able to put that aside and understand that that's the job. Especially with corona, I'm grateful to have a contract next year.
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"There is a lot of players that aren't [contracted], Jack being one of those, so ... I was really looking forward to him getting that chance to look for a contract somewhere."
The birth of his second daughter on the weekend also kept 24-year-old Lewis upbeat during his recent absence from the playing field.
"That's always a good little mindful reminder about life and it's simple beauty, really," Lewis said.
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Meanwhile, hooker Jeremy Marshall-King said he's yet to speak with incoming coach Trent Barrett despite being contracted in 2021.
That hasn't dampened his enthusiasm for the arrival of Barrett, who is an assistant coach for the ladder-leading Panthers.
"It will be good to have him at this club. They're going good at Penrith and he's been a great player for this game," Marshall-King said.
Marshall-King has been pleased with his form over the past three weeks having found he has more energy to run from dummy-half when he shares the hooking role with Sione Katoa.
"I reckon I've been playing a lot better in little spurts," he said.
"I just want to be more of a runner now. Especially the game now, it's a lot faster than last year."